Term 3 Week 10 Newsletter 2023
Thank you Fr Jim
With the upcoming school holidays it is with sadness that we say farewell to Fr Jim Carty who has been filling in this term. The school community is extremely grateful for the support, care and kindness from Fr Jim during his stay. His humility, experience and wisdom has had such a positive impact on school culture in his short stay. We wish Fr Jim the very best as he returns to Sydney next term.
Class Parents Canteen Days
Fun Run Fundraiser Term 4
As suggested at our Fun Run meeting last Wednesday, the canteen can be utilized for classes/ year levels to organise a special canteen menu where the profits go towards that year group for their Fun Run totals. The canteen special could be: hamburger days / sushi / ice blocks / sausage sizzle/ pizza days/ hot dogs etc. Students can be involved in the planning however it will require parent supervision. Orders will go through the Compass App. Please contact Tim, Lauren or Sonya or your Class Parent rep who will lock in days on the calendar. Thank you for your support.
We have been invited to field teams in the Year 3/4 and Year 5/6 mixed Rugby Sevens Gala day to be held at Byron Bay on Thursday 12th October. Mr Bermingham will be training students who have expressed interest this week at lunchtime. Please contact the office if you would like your child to be involved as places are limited.
There will be a cake sale this Thursday to raise money for our fun run, there will be yummy food to purchase and also Snow Cones available.
Year Five Podcasts
Year Five has been productive creating Podcasts this term. To listen to some of these entertaining and informative podcasts click on the link below.
Term 3 School fees
Can I ask that all outstanding school fees be finalised by the end of this week. Term 4 fees will be issued at the beginning of term 4. Thank you to all those families who pay their school fees on time, it is greatly appreciated. If you need assistance with your fees, or would like to set up a payment plan, please make contact with Alison in the front office.
Yours in Partnership,
Tim Bleakley - Principal
Whole School Mass
There was much to be grateful for last Friday as we celebrated our Catholic School- St Finbarr's. The Whole School attended what can only be described as a Mass full of joy. Our students participated beautifully with the singing lifting the roof.
Father Jim’s homily was one to remember with him introducing the students to the Churkendoose, a beautiful story of appreciating difference.
The children continued their celebrations with open classrooms and a walk to the beach. All students participated in sandcastle building and/or beach soccer and beach cricket, with everyone enjoying a lemonade icy pole when we arrived back at school.
It was so wonderful to celebrate as a Parish community our Catholic School and acknowledge how incredibly blessed we are.
St Finbarr's Feast Day
The 25th of September marks the Feast Day of St Finbarr which this year falls in the first week our school holidays.
Did you know…..
- Saint Finbarr was a remarkable person who lived many centuries ago in Ireland.
- He was a devout Christian, who wanted to share the message of love and goodness with everyone.
- Saint Finbarr decided to create a special place called a monastery in a town called Cork. This was a peaceful place where people could learn about their faith and how to live good and kind lives.
- His teachings and leadership were so inspiring that he eventually became the very first bishop of Cork.
- People admired Saint Finbarr for his kindness and wisdom and he was made a saint after he passed away.
Yours in Partnership,
Assistant Principal - Mission
Learning & Teaching
Teaching your kids Social Media / Tech Smarts
For most parents these days, there’s no avoiding social media. You probably have it yourself, as do all your friends, and if you’re among the vast majority of parents in Australia — your kids will have it too.
According to the ACMA, 4 years ago only 45 per cent of 8-11 year olds were using social media….That proportion has now risen to at least 60 per cent, with many of the platforms in question being age restricted (generally for users aged 13+).
So while trying to eliminate social media from your family’s life would be fighting an increasingly steep up-hill battle, there are some easy, preventative ways to help keep your children safe on these platforms. The key is education and awareness.
The first step is educating yourself, then passing this knowledge onto your kids, and giving them the Social Media Smarts they need to navigate these platforms.
Understanding the Dangers
- Privacy: Online predators still pose a great risk to children on social media. It is important that you familiarise yourself with all the privacy settings in place to help protect your children. Especially for young kids, it's important that they have a private profile, limit the amount of personal information they put online (especially addresses and phone numbers), and minimise friend requests from people they don't know. Privacy settings will vary from platform to platform, so it's best to research each program individually.
- Inappropriate content: Young girls especially are facing increasing pressure to engage in the exchange of nude photographs, otherwise known as ‘sexting’. Dr. Greg Carr has seen patients as young as 10 years old suffering from severe anxiety as a result of exchanging naked photos via social media platforms.
- Online bullying: Cyber safety expert Susan McLean says she has seen ‘hideous’ cyber bullying occur from primary school aged students. This bullying can come in many different forms, such as unapproved photo sharing, harassment, hacking, name calling, exclusion and public humiliation. She’s even seen kids ‘set up accounts in other kids’ names and use that as a tool to bully and harass other people.’ It’s crucial that you know the different ways a child can be victimised by cyber bullying, so you know what you — and your child — should look out for.
- Addiction: If your child loses interest in other activities, becomes agitated or anxious when they can’t access social media, or is constantly distracted by it, they may have a technology or social media addiction. There’s easy ways to prevent this from happening, though, and it’s important to know that simply using social media a lot doesn’t suggest an addiction. It’s when their use of social media interferes and disrupts their ability to function that it may be a problem. Being aware of the signs and symptoms of technology addiction, and what you can do to avoid it is integral. So now you’ve educated yourself on the dangers of social media, it’s time to focus on the kids.
What your child needs to understand about Social Media
- The permanence of posting: It can be a hard concept for kids to grasp – that their future selves may not want to publicise the same personal information that they do now. Make it simple for them, and if they can’t conceive of their future selves, go to the past… Would a 13 year old want all their friends to know about their barbie doll collection? Emphasise to your kids the inescapable permanence of online posting, and that what they post now could hurt them in the future. Suggesting to them that they never post something on an impulse and wait a few hours (or days) before doing it can be a good start.
- They get to create the boundaries of use: Many children begin group messaging and message apps before social media. Helping your children develop positive habits around when to share, what to share and how to communicate within these groups is a crucial skill. Let your children know that they are able to leave group chats just as they are able to ‘walk away’ from a situation in real life that they aren’t interested in, engaged in or happy with.
- Understanding the different forms of bullying: Cyber bullying manifests itself in many different ways, and some are less obvious than others. Make sure you and your kids know what to look out for. For example, a more subtle form of cyber bullying may be other kids privately sharing a photo that someone else has posted, or creating their own post imitating it. A key concept is that if your child feels uncomfortable about something they’ve seen or heard about that’s happened online, it’s likely that it’s a problem. And if someone is upset about something that’s happened online, it absolutely needs to be addressed.
- Having empathy for others: It’s one thing to protect your kids from being the victims of bullying, but it’s equally important to make sure they aren’t perpetrating it. Teaching your kids about empathy and encouraging them to see how their social media behaviour may affect others will play a huge role in preventing them from engaging in online bullying behaviour.
- The ‘unreality’ of social media: Kids need to understand that while social media profiles can be a reflection of someone’s identity, they’re a very carefully curated one. In particular, photos can be harmful to young girls and set up unrealistic standards of beauty. ‘Education around the skewed perception of social media is so important’, says staff psychologist Dani Kaufman. ‘Obviously people don’t put up unattractive photos up of themselves, so naturally without even trying there’s pictures of beautiful people everywhere.’ ‘That can really affect your self-esteem or sense of self, so having awareness that it’s skewed and that it's not reality, and having that understanding that it can affect the way that you feel and what you see without even knowing it is crucial.’ ‘You can’t stop your kids from being exposed to those pictures, but acknowledging that just because that’s what we see online is not what’s in the real world is a vital lesson to be learnt.’ So now that you know what you need to know, and what your kids need to know….
Here’s what you can do to make your kids Social Media Smart
- Talk to them first: ‘Parents really need to be involved, in explaining things to their kids about the permanence of their posts and the impact of their words’, It’s not enough to rely on the school system to teach them, and unfortunately, social media safety is not being adequately addressed. Take the time to sit down with them and discuss all the issues addressed above in age-appropriate terms.
- Lead by example: Parents are the most influential people in their children’s lives. If you do things on social media that you wouldn’t want your kids to do – think again. This is especially pertinent when it comes to how much time you spend on social media and what you chose to share on it.
- Limit their usage: Set clear boundaries for where and when your kids can access social media. Dinner time could be a ‘screen-free’ zone, as well as trips in the car or other opportunities where they should be talking to you instead of someone else through a digital device. Implementing restrictions early on will help your child to develop healthy habits, and avoid becoming too consumed (or even addicted) to social media. Social media can be scary for parents and their kids — but by helping them to be smart with their choices, you can also help them to stay safe.
Book Week Parade
A reminder that we have our Book week parade at 9:10am on Thursday in the undercover area. All students are invited to dress up as their favourite character or a character from a book that inspires them.
A reminder we have our Finals Fever $12 lunch special on Friday. Includes choice of Hot Dog or Sushi, Red rock chips,Quelch Icypole + a raffle ticket to win a ball. Orders to be placed via Compass Canteen before THURS 11am. All proceeds go towards our Finnies Fun Run Fundraiser.
ZING Activ - Skipping
What a wonderful showcase our classes put on, on Monday demonstrating all the skills they have learned and been working on throughout the term. Skipping has been a hit since week 1 with students opting to practice their skills before school, at recess and lunchtime. Thanks to all the parents, carers and friends who joined us for this celebration of learning. Next term ZING are back and the focus will be GYMNASTICS.
Yours in Partnership,
Assistant Principal - Learning and Teaching
50m Surfsafe Trial (2oth Oct-Term 4)
St Finbarr’s Stage 2 & 3 students will be involved in the Surf Safe program for their weekly sport beginning in Term 4, Week 3.
Due to safety regulations of children participating in water activities, every child in Stage 2 & 3 will have to partake in a swimming trial for eligibility to participate in the Surf Safe program. Each child will be required to swim 50m competently to be able to join in the Surf Safe Program. Competency would show adequate stroke and stamina to complete 50m freestyle without needing to stop, hold the edge or touch the bottom.
This is just a friendly reminder that students may want or need to get back into the pool to prepare for this trial, which will be held in Week 2-Term 4, after the holidays.
Please be aware if your child can not satisfy the requirement, they will not be able to participate in the Surf Safe program this year and will participate in the Intensive Swimming Program instead (Weeks 8 & 9).
If your child is absent from our Swimming trial, they are required to have a swimming instructor/coach witness their swimming ability of 50 metres, document & sign.
Any parent who would prefer their child to participate in the Intensive Swimming program instead are required to email Mrs Clark before the 50m Swim trial.